Williamsburg Stores To Drop “No Sleeveless, No Low-Cut Necklines” Signs
In the past, I’ve looked at the benefits of homogeneity in certain neighborhoods — like Hasidic enclaves in Williamsburg.
But there are clearly some problems as well, including the fortress mentality that can develop against outsiders, namely non-Hasidic women who aren’t bound by religious edicts on clothing. A couple years ago, the city sued seven Hasidic stores for posting signs that said “No shorts, no barefoot, no sleeveless, no low-cut necklines allowed in store,” saying that the stores were effectively discriminating against women, and on the basis of religion.
That lawsuit has been settled.
The city dropped the $75,000 in collective fines it had demanded. In return, the stores have agreed to ease up.
The commissioner’s statement asserted that, according to “the proposed agreement, representatives from the stores agreed that if they were to post new signs in their windows, they would say that while modest dress is appreciated, all individuals are welcome to enter the stores free from discrimination.” [Agudath Israel]
Photo credit: group by Several seconds on Flickr.